Posted by: Leslie | March 2, 2008

sharing the knowledge

For a while I’ve noticed that there aren’t a lot of opportunities to learn to spin in this region, which surprised me given this area’s long history of fibre arts activities. There are a couple of guild-affiliated classes around, but they tend to be expensive and offered more for guild members rather than the general public. So, a couple of months ago I started posting on message boards on Ravelry about looking for a place to host a spinning workshop. The owners of Ariadne Knits graciously offered me the time and space at their shop, and as of now I’m scheduled to be teaching there (scroll down to get to my class) at least once a month. I’ll be teaching afternoon workshops on beginning spinning on a drop spindle (with the possibility of other topics in the future) and as of now, my March and April classes are fully booked. It’s exciting to be be able to share my spinning knowledge with people in a fun, affordable way, and at such a great venue. It’s funny that I couldn’t find anywhere in Ottawa to do the workshops but easily found a place in Montreal. Not that I mind going to Montreal at least once a month! I’ll post pictures after the first class.



  1. we are so excited to have you as a teacher! i CANT WAIT until the first class! 🙂

  2. A lot of people here in Montréal have been asking about spinning, so the market’s definitely there…

    I have been asked to teach a few times but I’ve never been able to fit it into my schedule. But I’m thrilled to see that you’re coming down to spread the fun and even more thrilled to hear that the class was a resounding success. YAY…I will not be the only one anymore showing up to knitting meetings in Montréal with a spindle in my bag 🙂

    I’m surprised, though, that no one in Ottawa has taken you up on classes. I’ve got some wonderful spinning friends in Ottawa who come to Rhinebeck every year…I always had the impression that I’d find more spinners there than in Québec. Spinning has taken a long while to catch on as a fun activity here, mostly because it has been seen for so long as a subsistence activity, not a leisure activity. Long history of putting food on the table with spinning…so knitters here haven’t been so much into the idea of making their own yarn. Until now. Buahahahaha 🙂

    Resistance is futile 🙂

  3. Actually (and this shows how overdue for a blog post I am), I’m meeting today with a shop in Ottawa about teaching spinning classes there. So that’s very exciting 🙂

    I think the established arts community in Montreal helped get the spinning thing off the ground for me there first. Ottawa has plenty of artists too, but there feels like less of a community/network in place. There are even spinning classes offered here already, but they are through the guild which I’ve found to be a pretty insular group (and they don’t really advertise their classes to non-guild members much).

    But I love to be able to spread the spinning love to new people… where I’m from (Colorado) has a huge number of fibre artists so it was a great place to be a new spinner when I was first learning. In contrast, there haven’t been too many opportunities for people to learn to spin–at least as a leisure activity, as you pointed out!–in this region (Ontario and Quebec), and I’m really happy to be able to offer that. 🙂

  4. I’m very happy to be enrolled in the April spinning class despite the fact that I have totally cheated and am addicted to spinning already. I blame my partner in grapefruit for that. But I’ll be the one bringing in lots of little skeins of handspun to show off, insisting on asking too many questions and generally being a pest.

    And it makes me very happy to hear that you enjoy the pamplemousse en caoutchouc roving that we’ve produced thus far. Not being a skilled spinner, I feel like I’m dyeing without knowing what I’m producing. Every sale is still such a novelty too!

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